Kobe-based Swift Xi and its partners have signed an agreement with the government’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organisation (NEDO), to develop a 3D spacial information system, intended to safely guide drones and then later eVTOLs, through Japan’s cities and general urban landscapes, reports akihabaranews.com.

Swift Xi is a Japan joint venture between Swift Engineering, headquartered in San Clemente, California, and the Kobe Institute of Computing. The firm provides data and IT services, logistics, and full-service operations of autonomous and robotic technologies.

Alex Echeverria, President of Swift Tactical Systems, another group company, commented. “This project, with its goal of creating a 3D spatial information infrastructure, will establish safe flight paths for unmanned aerial vehicles and urban air mobility corridors in urban areas… driving the development of new infrastructure that will enable the safe and efficient operation of autonomous unmanned aerial vehicles and create new value using spatial identification.”

Hiro Matsushita, chairman and CEO at Swift Group, added, “We would like to be the very first team in the world to establish a safe 3D spatial information infrastructure system.”

Four other firms are involved in the project.

: Kitakyushu-based map publisher Zenrin (to develop a flight risk management system prototype using algorithms).

: Tokyo-based Space Service Innovation Laboratory (SSIL) (to design the 3D spatial information infrastructure).

: Tokyo-based LocationMind (to provide dynamic data on the flow of people, etc., to decrease flight risks and test the usefulness of its spoofing protection system).

: Osaka-based Intelligent Style (to create the database architecture).

Via this collaboration, NEDO aims to render spatial identification into a standard index, making it easier to search, integrate, and utilise in a machine-readable format. Aside from drones and eVTOLs, the system is expected to have applications for self-driving cars and automatic delivery robots as well.

This development is very important with the Osaka Expo 2025, to be held in Kansai, little more than two years away. Japan is determined to make this six month event a showcase for both drones and eVTOLs.

(News Source: akihabaranews.com)

(Top photo: Getty Images)